Jurisdiction - Australia
Australia – Federal Court Rules Against Optus And Finds TV Now Did Infringe Copyright.

30 April 2012

National Rugby League Investments Pty Limited v Singtel Optus Pty Ltd [2012] FCAFC 59.
On 27 April 2012, the Full Federal Court unanimously held that Optus had infringed the copyright of the Australian Football League and the National Rugby League under s 111 of the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) (the "Act").
This overturns a decision made in February 2012 by the Federal Court, which ruled in favour of Optus.  At first instance, Rares J held that was the user and not Optus who caused recordings of free to air television programs to be made via Optus' TV Now service.  However, as these recordings were made for personal or domestic use, it was held that they did not infringe copyright under s 111 of the Act.
However, on appeal the Full Federal Court has ruled that Optus held some responsibility for making the recordings.  Whether the recordings were made in conjunction with the user or if they were solely the responsibility of Optus was irrelevant, as Optus was not entitled to use the defence of making them for private or domestic use and was in breach of the Act.
The Full Federal Court noted that this decision only applies to the specific technological system used by Optus and that differing technologies may not result in the same outcome.
View the Full Federal Court decision.

For further information, please contact:
Mary Padbury, Partner, Ashurst



Homegrown Dispute Resolution Law Firms – Australia


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